Times West Virginian
Before Fairmont Senior’s game at Elkins, linebacker Vincent Delligatti made a short, but firm statement.
“We ready,” he posted on Twitter just before game time.
Were they ever.
Austin Norman connected with Neil Scherich for a 47-yard catch-and-run just 32 seconds into the game. It set the tone for the Polar Bears, who routed Elkins, 48-13.
It was the third consecutive game in which the Polar Bears (4-0) have tallied more than 45 points. In total, Fairmont Senior has outscored opponents by a combined margin of 193-46. Elkins (0-5) remains winless.
"We sure like to start fast,” Fairmont Senior coach J.L. Abbott said. “The second play of the game we got on the board, and we got rolling from there.”
After the touchdown catch, Scherich added one on the ground from four yards out to stretch the lead to 14-0.
“Neil played a great game offensively,” Abbott said. “He’s capable of that at any time. He has great speed, and his hands have gotten a whole lot better as the season has gone on. We have all the confidence in the world in Neil.”
Noah Harmon added a 13-yard scamper to put Fairmont Senior up 21-0 after one quarter. Harmon, who entered the game as the Big 10’s leading rusher, piled on 127 more yards to bring his season total to 684.
Quarterback Norman, who dropped to third in the Big 10 in passing after a bye week, boltered his season total. He was 15-of-19 for 232 yards and two touchdowns. His second touchdown pass of the day went to Luke Hrapchak in the second quarter.
Then on the next possession, the Fairmont Senior defense forced a fumble and Delligatti proved he was as ready as his tweet suggested. He scooped the ball up and rumbled into the end zone.
Ryder Skarzinski added a sixth touchdown, and the Polar Bears went to the half with a commanding 42-0 lead.
Elkins celebrated Senior Night at the half. Evidently no one told Fairmont Senior that it was meant for the home team. All six of the first-half scores came from 12th graders.
With the score lopsided for the third straight week, the second half was little more than a formality. Elkins scored twice in the second half and Fairmont Senior’s Malik Boddy added a touchdown of his own, as the junior varsity finished out the game.
“It’s always good any time you can get your younger guys in there,” Abbott said. “Those guys are our future.”
The long-term future, maybe. In the immediate future, the Polar Bears are focused on their next opponent, a solid one-loss Bridgeport team.
“Bridgeport, they’re probably one of the most disciplined, physically sound teams you will play,” Abbott said. “We’re excited to be where we’re at. We also know that we’ve got a big one coming up.”